anglo-saxon vs romanceThe first thing one notices in formal English isthat most words used are of Romance origin.These can be recognized by: French spelling Latin origin usually one-word verbs
the social dimensionA writer enters into a relationship with hisreaders; an audience he is not familiar with. Itis the convention to take a formal standtowards this audience, for reasons of respect,certainly not for reasons of conceit.
taking distanceFormal writing demands impersonalconstructions in which we use:Passive constructions that take away the agent;Abstract nouns and nominalisations.
taking distanceBe reminded, though, that passive sentencesand a lot of nominalisations can makesentences unclear to the reader. Sometimes anactive sentence can be better for the sake ofclarity.
exampleI measured the temperature and checked if thefluid was still transparent.becomes:The fluid was measured and checked fortransparency.
contractionsContracted or abbreviated verbs pretend to imitate ourspeaking habits. Therefore, writing skills do not allowverb contractions but only fully-written verbs.Compare:He doesnt .... He does not....Id like...... I would like....Please note:Hed better research... He had better research...It cant be concluded... It cannot be concluded...
contracted verbsAvoiding to use fully-written verbs could givethe impression that the author is not seriousabout his topic, creating thus a possible risk ofa breech of trustworthiness by the reader.